MANILA, Philippines — The Miss Universe Organization (MUO) formally announced this year's selection committee for the preliminary and final competitions.
The all-female panel of judges is composed of an eclectic set of empowered and successful women in their different fields of endeavor.
These are former Miss Universe winners Brooke Lee (1997) and Zuleyka Rivera (2006), together with Korean-American actress-singer-model Arden Cho, South Asian entrepreneur Deepika Mutyala, Canadian TV pertonality Keltie Knight, Carnival Cruise Line president Christine Duffy, Colombian economist Tetyana Orozco and Mary Kay Cosmetics' chief marketing officer Sheryl Adkins-Green.
"I am always excited about Miss Universe. I am so excited I did not think this day would come. I know most of you did not think this day would come. And here you are! So thank you! I want you all to realize your worth. You deserve to be here.
"But more than these 10 days, I want you to take it and make the most of it. And take it into your life and realize you can do whatever you want. You don't need to be a Miss Universe to do whatever you want. You just need to be you, and you need to believe in yourself.
"There are a million reasons for you to say 'I cannot do something.' All you need is one good reason to say 'I can'," enthused MUO President Paula Shugart, during a pep talk she gave on rehearsal day.